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San Juan Loses Ground As Cruise Ship Homeport


June 28, 2001
Copyright © 2001 CARIBBEAN BUSINESS. All Rights Reserved.

Carnival Cruise Lines has unveiled new itineraries and ship redeployments to Tampa, New Orleans, and Galveston as part of its upcoming two-year strategy.

The company claims that bringing more ships to these ports, rather than having them homeport in South Florida or Puerto Rico, will allow more customers to use ground transport to arrive at them, thus lowering the price of their cruise.

Homeport is the destination where ships begin and end trips.

Carnival will deploy its largest ship Conquest on seven-day cruises from New Orleans in late 2002, while Jubilee will begin four and five-day cruises from Galveston in the summer of 2002.

Further, Carnival will introduce the Inspiration on seven-day cruises from Tampa, as well as increase capacity from Tampa by 38% when the Sensation begins four and five-day cruises in the fall of 2002.

"Carnival carries more passengers from New Orleans, Tampa, and Galveston than any other cruise line and these ship deployments will provide new cruise options from each of these ports," said Carnival President Bob Dickinson.

Inspiration, based in San Juan since 1996, was moved last year to New Orleans. Next year, Inspiration will have a home in Tampa. Facination also called San Juan its homeport until it too was repositioned last year to Miami.

Currently, Carnival has two vessels in San Juan year round, the Destiny and Holiday.

Carnival had its best quarter in a year during the second fiscal quarter ended May 31. Although net earnings were down 8%, the amount of revenue per available berth rose 1.8%, a sign of stronger pricing. Profits reached $187 million or 32 cents a share, compared with $204 million or 34 cents a share for the same quarter a year ago. Revenue for the quarter was $1.1 billion compared to $875 million last year.

Carnival has operated from Tampa and New Orleans for years, but moved a ship to Galveston only last fall. It is making a push to generate more business in Texas, where it has opened several vacation store kiosks in large shopping malls to stimulate bookings.

This Caribbean Business article appears courtesy of Casiano Communications.
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